PAP President Charumbira arrives Kigali for meeting of AU Organs on Reforms - AFRICAN PARLIAMENTARY NEWS



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Wednesday, June 7, 2023

PAP President Charumbira arrives Kigali for meeting of AU Organs on Reforms

President of the Pan-African Parliament (PAP), H.E. Hon. Chief Fortune Charumbira on Tuesday arrived in Kigali, Rwanda for a meeting of all the organs of the African Union (AU) on AU Reforms. The meeting will take place from 08 to 10 June.

H.E. Chief Charumbira was received on arrival at the Kigali airport by the Zimbabwe Ambassador to Rwanda, Professor Charity Manyeruke.

It would be recalled that in 2016, African leaders decided that Institutional Reforms of the African Union (AU) was urgent and necessary given the role the AU is expected to play in driving and achieving Africa’s Agenda 2063 vision of inclusive economic growth and development.

President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, was mandated by the Assembly of Heads of State of the AU in July 2016 to lead the process. He in turn appointed a nine member advisory team to assist him in the assignment.

In furtherance of the process, the African Union Commission recruited a firm “Delloitte” to assist in the finalization of the remaining priorities of the reform which included assessing the effectiveness of the mandate, roles, and functions of the Pan African Parliament since its establishment.

Consequently, the firm visited PAP during the March 2023 Committee Sitting where the team had interactions with the various organs of the Parliament. PAP thereafter submitted a position paper.

In the submission, PAP reminded the firm that in one of the preambles to the Constitutive Act, the founders of the Union expressed a determination to “take all necessary measures to strengthen our common institutions and provide them with the necessary powers and resources to enable them discharge their respective mandates effectively”. PAP posited that Article 17 of the Constitutive Act clearly made it clear that the composition, powers, functions and organization of the Parliament are defined in the PAP Protocol which was ratified by the member states of the Union. This they argued, should be construed as granting some level of operational autonomy to PAP. Accordingly, all organs of the Union are bound by the provisions of the PAP Protocol.

PAP also posited that AU organs should stay within the mandate granted to them by the Constitutive Act which established them without enlarging such powers through their respective rules of procedure. The Constitutive Act codified the way that the organs of the Union should operate.

Finally, PAP posited that in proposing an organizational structure for the Parliament, proper notice must be taken of the provisions of Article 17(2) of the Constitutive Act which states that the composition, powers, functions and organization of the PAP are contained in the PAP Protocol. Any recommendations on the organizational structure of PAP must therefore be consistent with the provisions of the PAP Protocol as ratified by member states of the Union. Otherwise, for such proposed restructuring to be implemented, it would require amendment to the PAP Protocol which entails adoption by the Assembly and ratification by the required Member States.

It is expected that the Kigali meeting will deliberate on the submissions by the various organs during the meeting. A report is expected to be produced which will be presented by President Paul Kagame to the next meeting of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the Union.


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